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Why Is My Wallpaper Falling Off?

Henri Bauholz

When correctly applied, wallpaper can make a room stand out. However, an application of wallpaper may unravel much earlier than expected. The reasons for this vary and require some good investigative skills on part of the homeowner.

Properly installed wallpaper can last a long time.

Improper Installation

When diagnosing wallpaper problems, look at the application of the wallpaper to the wall surface. Older walls may have decorative strips that were applied with paste and a roller while newer versions of wallpaper are often self-adhering. In either case, a properly installed section of wallpaper should last for 10 years or more.

Water Leak

Roof leaks around the chimney or vent pipes can produce mysterious stains on the interior walls and ceiling surfaces of the lower floors of the home. This can cause strips of wallpaper to unravel in the center of the house. In this situation, the source of the leak must be found and repaired before the wall can be fixed.

Installation On Uninsulated Exterior Wall

Interior walls along the outside perimeter of the house are sometimes subject to large temperature changes or excessive moisture. This is particularly true in older older houses that were built without wall insulation or vapor barriers. The presence of any one of these conditions can lead to the early breakdown of the adhesive that holds the wallpaper in place.